Mr. Morrison is a single father to his four-year-old son, Hasir, who lives with cerebral palsy. Mr. Morrison was struggling financially while serving as his son’s full-time caregiver. That’s when a friend referred him to Martha’s Table, and he met Ra’Chelle Dennis, our Family Engagement Specialist. Enrolling in THRIVE with Martha’s Table made all the difference for Mr. Morrison.
Martha’s Table has been leading the way with innovative direct cash assistance programs. Our THRIVE East of the River program, in partnership with four local organizations, supported 590 D.C. families with vital cash assistance and essential resources.
“I felt as though Ra’Chelle tried her best to come through with any resources or outlets that she could,” Mr. Morrison remembered. “I couldn’t thank her enough. I feel as though she’s really trying to extend her hand to make sure I get the best resources and help that I can get.”
Did you know that a recent THRIVE report from the Urban Institute found that cash assistance significantly reduces household stress?
“The financial support was able to help me pay my bills and not be so stressed,” he remembered with relief. “It allowed me to focus on parenting a little more because when you focus on bills, it’s hard for you to be in the best space, emotionally and physically.”
“Mr. Morrison has truly given me hope and continued drive,” Ra’Chelle shared.
With Martha’s Table in his corner, Mr. Morrison is also proud to be an advocate for other parents walking similar paths. Through his Youtube page, “Hasir Hero,” he aims to bring awareness to the day-to-day realities, triumphs and experiences of being a single father who is the primary caregiver of a child with special needs.
“In the last year, I became a single father raising a child with disabilities,” he shared. “I want to bring light to others who are in a similar situation and give an example of how I manage Hasir…bring a witness to how much he’s overcome, how much he’s pushing!”
Mr. Morrison also joined our Father program this year. The fathers’ program is a supportive space for male caregivers to come together, share their stories, and uplift one another.
For Mr. Morrison, a big source of strength comes directly from Hasir’s resilient attitude. “He never gives up,” Mr. Morrison marveled. “He’s always trying to do something. Even when I stand him up and he falls…he gets right back up.”
Neighbors like Mr. Morrison and Hasir inspire us at Martha’s Table every single day and remind us why our work is so important.